Internet Cookies and Their Types

While browsing websites, you might have come up with a pop asking you to accept cookies or deny them. So, what exactly is a cookie? Let us get to know more about it.

What is a Cookie?

Cookies are nothing but a small file containing text which is being made when you enter a website. According to the law, if a website plans on collecting cookies, it must get consent before doing so. When a new web page is opened, they're typically written.

Cookies are tiny text files with a name, value, and attribute that are often encrypted. A web server's name is used to identify cookies. Value is a random alphanumeric character that holds information such as a unique identifier for the user and other data. The data can be obtained and utilized to customize the web page once the code has read the cookie on the server or client computer.

Types of Cookies

Cookies are divided based on their attributes, such as source, duration, and purpose.

Cookies Based on Source

  • First-party cookies − The user's browser sets first-party cookies when they visit a website. The information gathered by first-party cookies is used to calculate page views, sessions, and the number of users. Ad agencies and advertisers primarily utilize it to locate potential ad targets.

  • Third-party cookies − These are set by domains that the user does not visit directly. This occurs when publishers include third-party elements on their website (such as a chatbot, social plugins, or advertisements).

Cookies Based on Duration

  • Session cookie − A session cookie is a file that a website server delivers to a browser with an identification (a string of letters and numbers) for temporary use during a set period. By default, session cookies are enabled. Their goal is to make individual webpages load faster and improve website navigation.

  • Persistent cookies − Persistent cookies are those that remain in the browser for an extended length of time. They will only be erased when the cookies expire or the users clear them from the browser after being installed.

Cookies Based on Purpose

  • Necessary cookies − These are cookies that have to be present for a website to work.

  • Non-Necessary cookies − These cookies help keep track of the behavior on a browser.

Cookies − How Safe Are They?

There is a lot of anxiety and panic about privacy and security in recent times on the Internet. But don't worry; cookies do not pose a danger to privacy in and of themselves because they are only used as a storage facility which the user has provided or that the web server already has. While making this information available to particular third-party websites is possible, it is worse than maintaining it in a central database.

If you are afraid that the information you send to a web server may not be treated confidentially, you should reconsider whether you need to provide it.